FLEETVILLE – The Fleetville Fire Co. made way for the 11th Annual Calli Memorial Car Show held June 28 when classic car owners displayed their cars on the grounds of the fire company.
Owners also talked with show-goers and answered questions about their cars. They registered their cars to attempt to win a trophy for their class of car. The cars at the car show were judged among 13 categories, including stock, truck, custom, special interest, street rod, and rat rod. There were three trophies (first, second and third) awarded for each class, and a trophy for best in show.
Jim Walters, of Nicholson, and his sons, David and Zack, won first, second and third place in the 2000-to-date stock category. Each of them owns a GTO from the years 2004-2006.
Jim, who owns a yellow 2005 model, said that GTOs were discontinued in the 1970s but were brought back for only three years (2004-2006) when General Motors put Corvette motors in them. David owns a blue 2006 model and Zack owns a red, 2004 model. Jim mentioned that he and his sons go to the car show for fun, not just to win trophies He also likes the fact that the cost of registering his car in the show is for a good cause.
“I think it’s a good car show,” he said. “It’s a good benefit. It’s always a success.”
The Calli Memorial Car Show is a fundraiser for Light the Night Walk and proceeds go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The show is in memory of Calli Irene Walter, of Factoryville. She was born in 1999 but died of leukemia in 2003. Each year, her parents, Jeff and Vicki Walter, along with family members and friends, organize the car show to raise money for Light the Night.
“It enables us to help families with sick children,” said Evelyn Walter, Calli’s grandmother.
Jeff and Vicki also started a Calli Fund to help children with cancer. Each year, they give Christmas stockings and Easter baskets to local hospitals. They also donated to Camp Dost, a camp for children funded through the Ronald McDonald House in Danville. They also give checks to families in need. They have support from East Benton United Methodist Church volunteers, who gave free candy and sold mineral rocks at the car show to help raise funds.
The Walter family also gets support from local businesses, such as Do It Center, Carriage Barn Antiques and more. The sponsors by purchase advertisements in the Calli’s Car Calendar for Kids with Cancer which includes nine different calendars featuring cars from previous years.
Members of the Fleetville Fire Co. sold BBQ chicken to support the cause during the show.
“I got a lot of phone calls asking if the chicken barbecue was still going on,” said Beverly Michaels, life member of the fire company.
The Fleetville Fire Co. also allowed the Commonwealth 1, a helicopter used by Commonwealth Health System (affiliate of Moses Taylor Hospital) to take part in the show. Pilot Michael Mogg landed the copter, which is stationed off of Seaman’s Airport, on the grounds of the fire company. Brent Parry, NRP (National Registered Paramedic), and William Terry, PHRN (Pre-Hospital Registered Nurse), allowed children to climb inside the copter. They opened the clamshell door in the back of the copter to show people the gurney and equipment bags used for the patients.
“I think that they (Walter family and friends) are doing a successful fundraiser,” said Parry.
The Bloodmobile from the American Red Cross was also present at the car show. Vendors also sold their goods. Nagy Maple Farm from Daleville sold homemade maple syrup. Mary Ann Lucarine, who has a business called Crafty Creations, sold her hand-knitted hats, mittens, dolls and baby slippers shaped like Minions. People also enjoyed homemade cakes and pies, baked by residents of Fleetville, including strawberry rhubarb and cherry. There was had chocolate and peanut butter cakes.
“This is one of the biggest car shows in the area,” said Jerry Chilewski, one of the show-goers. “They coordinate the barbecue with the Fleetville Fire Company and the Benton School Reunion, so it brings the area together.”